LORENZEN | One Month Left — Don’t Let It Pass You By

You’ve got three assignments due tomorrow, a full slate of Zoom meetings for the rest of the day, half a dozen internship applications still yet to be sent into the career portal void, a small mountain of laundry assembling around the foot of your bed and social plans tonight which you don’t really have time for—it’s that point of the semester. Luckily, you’ve had your two meager wellness days which have certainly recharged your batteries in much the same way that scooping a cup of water out of the ocean will stop rising sea levels. Buckle up, it’s the last month of the semester. As we enter these next few chaotic weeks, it’s important to pause and take a step back before diving into the academic fray. Beyond taking the time for the usual self-care of buying a new succulent and an embarrassing amount of frozen food at Trader Joe’s, we need to take a moment to recognize the mental consequences of the stress to come.

LORENZEN | Political Debate Fatigue

There was a time when I loved to debate about politics. Whether it was making idealistic points like a low-budget Aaron Sorkin wannabe while dressed to the nines as a high school debater, casually arguing with friends while eating Louie’s well past midnight or participating in the web of countless cordial and sometimes less than cordial debates which make up Cornell’s political discourse — I loved it all. But these days, I’m not sure that I still do. And I don’t think I’m alone in that feeling. I am still fervently dedicated to politics.

LORENZEN | The Paradox of the Fall Semester

As Cornell administrators face rising concerns from the Cornell and Ithaca community over their reopening plans, they have repeatedly argued that their plans are supported by research which proves there will be fewer infections in a hybrid semester than online. This conclusion relies on a foundational assumption which has been invoked time and time again — that students will return to the Ithaca area regardless of whether Cornell is in-person or online, and Cornell can only properly test and monitor its students if the semester is in-person. By arguing that Cornell must reopen because students will return anyway, the administration has crafted a central paradox for its reopening plans this semester, which has been reflected in its recent convoluted messaging to the student body. For the administration, both the problem and the solution to managing the virus this fall is students returning to Ithaca. Before we consider the paradox wrought by the administration’s logic, let’s first consider the assumption itself.